Date 
September 13, 2012 
Speaker 
Dr. Baruch Barzel, The Center for Complex Network Research at Northeastern University, The Dana Farber Cancer Center at Harvard Medical School Boston, Massachusetts

Title 
Scaling Theory of Network Dynamics: What Can Three Numbers Teach Us about a Complex System ?

Abstract 
The contribution of network science to biology is primarily due to its abstraction, reducing the biological complexity into a network structure, and capturing the underlying wiring diagram of who is connected to whom. However, the art of network science lies in our ability to unify our understanding of structure and function. On the one hand predicting the dynamical behavior of the system from its topological structure, and on the other hand elucidating the topological structure from dynamical measurements. Here we present a formalism, which through a set of scaling laws enables us to peek into the dynamical mechanism occurring between the nodes in the network. We find that these scaling laws, described by three empirically accessible exponents, are an intrinsic property of the system’s dynamics, and can thus provide insights into the type of interactions governing them providing a theory for dynamical inference. Moreover, we also utilize this formalism for topological inference, where we translate dynamical measurements into prediction of network links. This prediction is of crucial importance in biology, as currently only a small fraction of the network links has been verified. While briefly mentioning applications in related fields, the talk will mainly focus on the biological relevance of the theory.
(This is joint work with AlbertLászló Barabási)

